Advice for Mutual Aid Groups

For advice re safeguarding and volunteers visit –

Download our guide to setting up a COVID 19 support group.

Also we have put together a guide on Shopping for your Community.

There is a fair bit to consider when setting up a support group and in the current situation we want to help as much as possible, as soon as we can.

In terms of collecting data on the groups of people you are helping, here are some guidelines: –

• Have a privacy statement that you can give to people.
• Collect only the minimum data required to do the job.
• Store the data safely, and have one person in the group who is responsible for the data, with a deputy.
• Work on a need to know basis. If a volunteer is delivering to 5 people, he only needs their addresses, not the whole data set.
• Don’t transfer the data set to other groups or organisations.
• Once you no longer require the data, make sure it is deleted / disposed of safely.

There is some really good guidance on the Information Commissioner’s Office website.

Next week we will be working on a guide to making safe financial transactions when running a shopping service. Some supermarkets are providing volunteer gift cards which may help with how to manage cash when social distancing and/or it being a bit of an informal arrangement.

See the You Magazine: – about volunteer gift cards and the supermarkets that are providing these currently.

You pay to preload a virtual card with a certain budget, and then the person organising your shopping can use this to pay for the goods. The vouchers typically feature a barcode or unique number which can be inputted at the checkout, with no need for any physical cash to exchange hands (especially important as social distancing measures mean ensuring you stay at least 2 metres apart).

Also the following links might be useful.

Using Money Safely